How Do Racecar Drivers Care For Their Cars?

Michael Luzich
3 min readFeb 23, 2023

The success of a racecar driver is dependent on proper car maintenance. Drivers need a car that is in top shape to win a race and must take extra care when it comes to maintaining their car. For this, drivers and their crew use a variety of strategies to ensure their cars are going to perform at their best. From checking tire pressure and brake pads to engine oil levels and more, racing teams must be prepared for any issues that may arise during a race. Here, we’ll take a look at what goes into car maintenance and find out how racecar drivers and their crews ensure their cars are in peak condition.

Tire Management

In Formula One racing, tire management is an essential part of making sure the car is running at its optimal performance. To this end, teams must decide on the best tire compounds for the given race conditions. Slicks, made from a softer compound, offer grip in dry weather, while grooved treaded tires, made from a tougher compound, are better suited for wet or slippery conditions. During practice sessions and qualifying races, teams will test different tire compounds to determine which is best for the actual race. Once the team has chosen the correct tires for the track, they will use them for the race. Tire management is a key factor in ensuring a Formula One car is running at its highest level.

Conditions of Brakes

Brake pads are an important part of Formula One cars. Drivers and their crew must take meticulous care of these parts to ensure safety and performance on the racetrack. Brake pads used in Formula One cars can be either steel or ceramic. Steel brake pads are typically used on high-speed tracks and are composed of a harder material, while ceramic brake pads are softer and are generally used on slower tracks. Teams often experiment with different types of brake pads during practice and qualification races to see how their car performs before deciding which type to use for the actual race. Racecar drivers must pay attention to the condition of their brakes and replace them when necessary to ensure that the car is able to stop safely.

Drag Reduction System

Drivers must be aware of the condition of their car’s Drag Reduction System. DRS is a system that helps reduce drag, which in turn can increase top speed. This is accomplished by opening up a flap on the rear wing of the car, decreasing the air resistance experienced by the vehicle. DRS is activated by the driver manually and is only used in specific circumstances, such as when a car is within one second of the car ahead of it or exiting a corner and attempting to overtake another car. Maintenance of this system is a crucial component of caring for the car so racecar drivers must monitor this system closely to ensure that it is in top shape to race.

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Michael Luzich

Michael Luzich is a Las Vegas businessman, founder of Luzich Partners, and an international racer & racecar collector. Learn more at http://michaelluzich.org